Insurance in some form is as old as historical society. So-called bottomry contracts were known to merchants of Babylon as early as 4000–3000 bce. Bottomry was also practiced by the Hindus in 600 bce and was well understood in ancient Greece as early as the 4th century bce. Under a bottomry contract, loans were granted to merchants with the provision that if the shipment was lost at sea the loan did not have to be repaid. The interest on the loan covered the insurance risk. Ancient Roman law recognized the bottomry contract in which an article of agreement was drawn up and funds were deposited with a money changer. Marine insurance became highly developed in the 15th century.
In Rome there were also burial societies that paid funeral costs of their members out of monthly dues.
The insurance contract also developed early. It was known in ancient Greece